Sustainable Fashion: shopping ethics
Each Spaniard consumes 34 garments a year and throws away about 12 kilos of clothes, according to a report by the Iberian Textile Recycling Association (Asirtex). Although it seems huge (and it is), the average American throws away 31 kg.
The so-called fast fashion, affordable and often poor quality clothing, which responds to fashion trends that change at the accelerated pace imposed by celebrities and instagrammers, has an impact on the environment that our planet cannot afford.
If to this cocktail we add the complaints that some brands and suppliers have received due to the bad working conditions of their workers, it seems that fashion loses all trace of glamour.
To the rescue of the environment and the consciousness comes the so-called slow fashion, a concept born under the umbrella of the slow movement, which was launched in Italy to claim a way to prepare and enjoy the healthiest food for our body, mind and environment (with local foods, prepared with traditional techniques and enjoyed with time and good company).
In the same way, wearing slow fashion means turning to garments and brands made with organic materials, manufactured locally, with non-polluting and handmade processes, decent working conditions, as well as quality and aesthetics that are alien to the vagaries of trends.
It is the sustainable or ethical fashion that is added to the new consumption options that many are considering in order to lead a more eco-friendly existence. The trend, experts say, comes from a demand from consumers, increasingly aware of the expensive price these 5.95 euro t-shirts hide.
If you are new to this movement, take note of these 10 commands of slow fashion
- Oppose conventional fashion and the trends that change at a blink. Wager on more timeless cuts and styles that last both today and next season.
- Support small brands and emerging designers.
- Choose firms that support fair trade.
- Promote recycling by buying second-hand clothing. Get rid of the clothes you don’t need correctly, in the clothes container.
- Consume garments made with natural raw materials and materials made sustainably.
- Choose clothes made ethically.
- Joint the DIY trend: learn to sew or weave your own garments and complements. This is a way to learn the effort of time and resources it takes to make clothes.
- Also in fashion, less is more: buying fewer garments of higher quality, as well as being more sustainable, will help us save in the long term.
- Information is power! Investigate the origin of the materials and ask about the working conditions of the firms you like … They aren’t transparent on these questions? Don’t trust them and go for other brands.
- Recycle! Fashionable trade is to fight against the accumulation of clothes in our wardrobes (and disposal units) by defending the option of wearing second-hand clothes in order to give garments new “life”. Today, many are the websites that show users how to recycle old clothes.
Values such as sustainability, fair trade and km 0 consumption are increasingly on the rise and are reaching more diverse sectors: from food to design, through architecture and of course, fashion. These are principles that mark new lifestyles and change buying habits, promoting conscious and responsible consumption.
Going shopping to look good and feel good
In this new universe of sustainable fashion, buying clothes is no longer just a matter of style. It goes much further. Sustainable fashion does not mean that a garment feels good to you, also that it makes you feel good, because we know what is behind that garment that we just fell in love with.
And, precisely because we know the way ethical brands work, consumers of sustainable fashion put aside impulse buying to become more observant and responsible consumers. Although that does not mean that they stop enjoying the act of buying in itself. On the contrary: nothing gives more satisfaction than knowing that that jersey that you have worn for the first time and that looks so good has been manufactured nearby, in fair conditions and with organic materials and that do not pollute the planet.
Faced with these new more and more booming consumption habits, the big brands have started to launch their sustainable fashion lines at the same time as many new designers position their signatures in tune with these positive values. And this is good. Good for the sector, for innovation and for the planet.
If you want to join this trend and do not know where to start, here is a guide to ethical fashion brands so that the more aware can begin to give a more sustainable look to their wardrobe: Pure Green Apparel, Lifegist, Ecoology, the Green Life Style store (various brands), Moves to Slow (online store, various brands).
And we have before us new values for the textile sector where innovation, creativity and sustainability are the levers to build a better world. So, if you are a person who likes to take care of yourself, you care about the environment and become aware of what you consume at all levels, sustainable fashion is the new trend that is worn. Are you with us?